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As Simple As Black And White!

th (7)Over the last few years, the prevailing conversation and top news stories was about an unarmed black person killed; men, women, and children at the hands of the police. I follow the news pretty closely, and all of these police killings were done by white police. It goes without saying that the outcomes left a lot to be desired and there was not much outrage from the white community. Regardless, of the circumstances only a few of the white cops were charged and none convicted!

Let’s recap: there was the horrible grand jury decision in the Eric Gardner and Michael Brown cases, to include almost all of the others show the environment that can only be described in one way “a black man’s life means nothing”. It speaks clearly that the black community is under siege and black men in particularly are marked for death with impunity and no accountability at the hands of the police. I have seen many social media comments from “Negro’s” who say things much like what conservative white America is saying that “it was the victims fault.”

Last week, two black police officers killed a white child and justice was swift. To my knowledge, this is the first or one of only a few where a black cop has shot and killed a white person in the same senseless manner as the weekly killings of black citizens. White America is up in arms, and their cry for justice is intense. Today, the black cops will be arraigned on murder charges. Don’t misunderstand me but their cries were barely hear when the white rookie cop killed Tamir Rice in Ohio, where, in that case, nothing has happened. Could it be just a case of American justice or something as simple as black and white?

In the many black killings, the system prop-up some ministers and every so-called civil rights leader to tell black people to “march and be peaceful” – Jesus will take care of it. I will not hold back my words here and say if Jesus were going to do something, he would stop the murdering of black men and children. Frankly, we have been marching for sixty-years and praying for four-hundred years to no avail. When the homicides are so blatant that Ray Charles can see this is wrong and in most of the cases, it was videotaped!

Now, I want to be clear the death of this child is as painful as any death, and I give my sympathy to the child’s family. I do not condone the actions of the black cops any more than I do when it is the white cops killing blacks. It is just that black people should get the same kind of justice as they do. However, my point is this: justice work differently when it’s a black doing what they routinely do to them what they do to us. In other words, in cases where blacks kill whites they react swiftly and harshly.

If you follow my blog, you know I love history and call upon what I have seen in the past. As a small child, I can vividly remember watching a small black and white television seeing Bull Connor put dogs on black people peacefully protesting for the most basic of human rights. I can also remember the police and fire departments using fire hoses on peaceful protesters, and those marchers would go to some church; kneel and pray. That was in the early 1960s and today in 2015 the same atrocities, brutality, and murder still happens. It is akin to the 1000s of lynching’s of black people that they did not seem important.

Black people have never received “justice” in any manner since being dragged onto the shores of this country. In the case of Mr. Gardner, he received a death sentence for selling a single cigarette. The twelve-year-old killed in Cleveland was killed for playing with a toy gun. The black man killed in a Wal-Mart while trying to buy a gun that was on sale in the store. Michael Brown killed thirty feet from a cop with his hands up seven times, and another black man killed just up the street in St. Louis a few weeks later. But in this killing of a white child by black cops justice will be served.

All over the news, the police advocates and retired cops have come out to say how horrible this particular police killing is, but in the cases where white cops killed black people they circle the wagons and hide behind the “blue wall of silence” and defended the white cops. All black people are saying is that Black Lives Matter and want the same justice as they want and demand. Again, I say is this a case that is as simple as black and white. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


An American Shame

“Disclaimer: This piece is long but it is knowledge everyone should know.”

2There have been many ways to suppress people over time; unfortunately, African Americans have endured the brunt of these efforts. As we know, the history of America reports that it was not only African American’s who were subjected or affected by these efforts. What I can report is that it was always a minority affected by these laws meant to ensure a permanent underclass.

This ideology began as indentured servants, then slavery, segregation, and now could it be conservatism. In each of these classifications there was a design called laws Black Codes, which I suppose make these immoral sanctions sound gentler. The truth is the sole purpose was to suppression rights. Kinda like the agenda behind the States Rights dog-whistles we hear today.

Black Codes were laws passed designed specifically to take away civil rights and civil liberties of African American on the state and local levels. This is the reason Conservatives desire a return to “States Rights” and speak of taking back their country because at the state level they can be unimpeded in turning back the hands of time.

Although, most of the discriminatory legislation, in terms of Black Codes, were used more often by Southern states to control the labor, movements and activities of newly freed slaves at the end of the Civil War. But as Malcolm X once said, “Anywhere south of Canada was south” meaning wherever you were in America you were subjected to discrimination in terms of the “separate but equal” laws, which was the law of the land.

The Black Codes of the 1860’s are not the same as the Jim Crow laws. The Black Codes were in reaction to the abolition of slavery and the South’s defeat in the Civil War. Southern legislatures enacted them during Reconstruction. The Jim Crow era began later, nearer to the end of the 19th century after Reconstruction, with its unwritten laws.

Then there were sundown laws, which meant Blacks, could not live or be caught in certain towns after dark. In some cases, signs were placed at the town’s borders with statements similar to the one posted in Hawthorne California that read “Nigger, Don’t Let The Sun Set On YOU In Hawthorne” in the 1930’s. In some cases, exclusions were official town policy, restrictive covenants, or the policy was enforced through intimidation.

After the abolition of slavery by the Thirteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution, which prior to that African Americans were considered 3/5’s human. Therefore, all former slave states adopted Black Codes. During 1865 every Southern state passed Black Codes that restricted the Freemen, who were emancipated but not yet full citizens. While they pursued re-admission to the Union, the Southern states provided freedmen with limited second-class civil rights and no voting rights. Southern plantation owners feared that they would lose their land. Having convinced themselves that slavery was justified, planters feared African Americans wouldn’t work without coercion. The Black Codes were an attempt to control them and to ensure they did not claim social equality.

The Black Codes outraged public opinion in the North because it seemed the South was creating a form of quasi-slavery to evade the results of the war. After winning large majorities in the 1866 elections, the Republicans put the South under military rule. They held new elections in which the Freedmen could vote. Suffrage was also expanded to poor whites. The new governments repealed all the Black Codes; they were never reenacted – OFFICALLY.

Many of these things are unknown to the generations of today because these injustices have been erased from our history and very little of it is taught in today’s classroom. For example, a sundown town was a town that was all white on purpose. The term was widely used in the United States and Canada in areas from Ohio to Oregon and well into the South. Even in Canada many towns in Southern Ontario, Alberta, and Quebec, were sundown towns prior to 1982, when it was outlawed. The term came from signs that were allegedly posted stating that people of color had to leave the town by sundown. They were also sometimes known as “sunset towns” or “gray towns”. Let me ask if you have ever been to a million dollar community – sound familiar.

The black codes that were enacted immediately after the Civil War, though varying from state to state, were all intended to secure a steady supply of cheap labor and all continued to assume the inferiority of the freed slaves. The black codes had their roots in the slave codes that had formerly been in effect. The premise behind chattel slavery in America was that slaves were property, and, as such, they had few or no legal rights. The slave codes, in their many loosely defined forms, were seen as effective tools against slave unrest, particularly as a hedge against uprisings and runaways. Enforcement of slave codes also varied, but corporal punishment was widely and harshly employed.

Let me highlight this example: In Texas, the Eleventh Legislature produced these codes in 1866. The intent of the legislation was to reaffirm the inferior position that slaves and free blacks had held in antebellum Texas and to regulate black labor. The codes reflected the unwillingness of white Texans to accept blacks as equals. You do remember “Juneteenth”? In addition, the Texans also feared that freedmen would not work unless coerced. Thus the codes continued legal discrimination between whites and blacks. The legislature, when it amended the 1856 penal code, emphasized the continuing line between whites and blacks by defining all individuals with one-eighth or more African blood as persons of color, subject to special provisions in the law.

Minorities were systematically excluded from living in or sometimes even passing through these communities after the sun went down. This allowed maids and workmen to provide unskilled labor during the day. Sociologists have described this as the nadir of American race relations. Sundown towns existed throughout the nation, but most often were located in the northern states that were not pre-Civil War slave states. There have not been any de jure sundown towns in the country since legislation in the 1960’s was inspired by the Civil Rights Movement, although de facto sundown towns and counties, where no black family lives – still exist.

Therefore, we see hints of it in the racism that has raised its ugly head and risen to the surface of society’s consciousness, particularly in this political climate. Since the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s, and especially since the Civil Rights Act of 1968 prohibited racial discrimination concerning the sale, rental, and financing of housing, the number of sundown towns has decreased.

However, as sociologist suggest it is impossible to precisely count the number of sundown towns at any given time, because most towns have not kept records of the ordinances or signs that marked the town’s sundown status. It is important to note that sundown status meant more than just African Americans not being able to live in these towns. Essentially any African Americans or other groups who came into sundown towns after sundown were subject to harassment, threats, and violent acts; up to and including lynching.

As one historian has noted, “Racial segregation was hardly a new phenomenon because slavery had fixed the status of most blacks, no need was felt for statutory measures segregating the races. These restrictive Black Codes have morphed in one form or another to achieve its desired effect to maintain a superior status by the powers that be. I am only suggesting that we know and understand history for it will open the mind to what the future may present.

Frankly, if you don’t know where you came from you will never get to where you are going. And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective!!!


University Student Writes Malcolm X Is Valued Hero For Today’s Times

The social and cultural impact the late civil rights leader and human rights champion Malcolm X still maintains in today’s modern society is an amazing example of his valuable existence. While the former Nation of Islam minister’s criminal past and fiery vocal assaults against the White power structure at large often defined him, it was his later acceptance of humanity as a many-hued tapestry that broadened his global appeal.


You Must VOTE!!!

2Elections are being held all over the nation this year. Most of these elections are on state and local level with issues that have national implications. The issues before voters encompass a wide range of concerns including union rights, voting rights, and women’s rights. Let us not be fooled by the right-wing because nothing about their views encompass the reality we face.

There are and will be issues placed before voters this fall and coming in 2016 that are serious and must not be taken lightly. Consider this, weren’t the rights of workers to organize collectively and negotiate for fair wages and safe working conditions determined long ago? If you like a 40 hour work week, overtime pay, weekends off, sick leave and paid vacations, you have no one to thank, but union organizers who brought workers together to demand these benefits.

The issue of raising the minimum wage for millions of workers and their families must be addressed in this age when “oligarchy” rules. Of course, there are other important issues. But just think about all of the people who sacrificed so much, like those who sacrificed their very lives to ensure that all citizens could exercise their constitutionally guaranteed right to vote.

Then there are the women’s issues; isn’t it settled law that women – as full citizens of this great nation – have the right to be secure in their own person – without Republican intrusion into the difficult and personal choices they make in respect to their own bodies?

One of the greatest difficulties we face by living in this democracy, if you believe that’s what this is, we must contend with the assaults from institutional racism. The highest court in the land is against the people; the House of Representatives is not a functional body, the police are combat soldiers, and you know what – it begs the question; who do they serve. Once we were slave, but today we are all slaves on the plantation. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…

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 THIS VIDEO SAYS IT ALL


Change Is Not Always Change

thI’ll start this “Thought Provoking Perspective” with God Bless America. Everyone knows the party of “No” wants to take over the government to use that power to turn back the hands of time. The characters that have emerged in this movement are scary enough for us to ask for help from someone greater than ourselves. Of course, some of these people are justifying their position, as was done with slavery, in the name of God, which is frightening. These are the same folks who claim they are now being discriminated against.

Back in the day, there were the George Wallace’s, Bull Connor’s, Strom Thurman’s and today we have a new breed; Glenn Beck, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh – to name a few. Their rage, from sea to shining sea, infects their followers who create conspiracies and spread false narratives regarding everything to quite neatly put the country into a place of perceived fear. This place they envision or want back was not all great, I know, can remember it; elitism, white privilege, and America’s racial codes were the foundation for segregation, cruelty, and amoral agenda’s. So I suppose the new complexion of America is freighting to those who stole the country in the first place.

Let’s face it; it had been a pretty good run, about 400 years, with little sign of any serious trouble challenging their supremacy. The system was working and humming along as they came up with new forms of government so people of their hue, particularly men, benefited. They controlled or occupied every branch of government for more than two centuries and had sole possession and leadership of its executive branch, where the symbol of power is the White House.

Today that streak has been broken when a non-white president accepted the oath of office six years ago, and they went crazy or at least the right-wing faction. Hatred and bigotry came forth immediately! First they said, the president was not born in the United States; therefore, ineligible to be president. His father was Kenyan and he was born in Hawaii, which they seemed not to realize it was part of the United States. His mother was white, and the man who looks black was brought up largely by his white grandparents, which is really the root of their problem. He’s not black; he’s not white… …is he even human? Tea baggers and many Republicans believe in their hearts that the president is the antichrist. Pure psychodrama!

They believe the devil has taken over the country and for the first time in American history, those who controlled every endeavor for so long [government, finance, politics, business, education, the arts, etc.] are devastated. The man that was voted in office has somehow stolen something from them. The fear of losing their power or being replaced by young brown and black kids is neither the America they know nor the way it is suppose to be. Facing the fact that 40 percent of the nation’s population under 18 is already non-white, with that number significantly higher in the Southwest. By 2023, that number of young non-whites will be an outright national majority.

Its “Like tectonic plates, these slow-moving but irreversible forces may generate enormous turbulence as they grind against each other … At some point, when tectonic plates build up enough tension that destructive energy gets unleashed in a major earthquake.” Actually, this is a pretty good metaphor for what happened the day a black man got elected president. The conservative movement thought the world ended.

Law and Order Theme:

These people don’t seem to remember Bush and are not thinking about how distressed the economy was when Mr. Obama took office or the two wars of which neither was implemented properly or being fought with clear goals. This is to include the housing markets that resembled a war zone; a health system crippled with costs, and an auto industry in the tank. This, one would think should be reason enough to be strong Americans and pull together to fix this mess, right? No….

They lie and distort the information. Let’s add a few more bogeymen to the mix like immigration. They have made Hispanics and others from sweltering southern destinations enemies of the American Dream. Yet, their slave labor is acceptable. As a result, they took extreme measures by passing what amounts to Arizona’s slave laws that would force its residents to carry identity papers with them at all times. Now, jurisdictions around the nation are salivating to follow suit.

You do remember Laura “N-word” Schlesinger and the great white outpouring of support following the bizarre flameout of her radio show. There was a time when even a bigot thought before calling an African American the N-word. Schlesinger used the word to a black woman on air, like twenty times in a minute. Then she implied that she did not want to be NAACP-ed, whatever that means.

The reason Stand your Ground, outrageous open carry gun laws, and the blocking of voting rights were designed; as a not so subtle attempt to ensure that no person of color reside in the White House again. I am just pointing out what appears to be a tone that is not in anyone’s best interest.

Frankly, if these self-professed patriots, who I call terrorists, should obtain all three branches of government – expect an attempt to pass a law to bring slavery back. Listen carefully to the words being used by those of the extreme. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…


What’s Next?

22I often praise the most powerful man on the planet, President Obama, and yes because he looks like me. Our president is strikingly handsome, articulate, likable, a family man, and one of the most accomplished man to occupy White House in many years. Let’s face it; his being elected twice to be president is the most significant event to occur in history since the crucifixion of Christ. No one living or dead ever dream a man of color would live in the house that slaves built. The question now is where do we go now since he will soon be leaving office?

I have said from the beginning of his term that there is not much he could do to correct the wrongs of our past. I think we know his power is restricted, as is any president. However, what he can do and has done though Mr. Holder is to address some of the problems we’ve faced in the justice system, which is a really good thing. Ray Charles can see that the court system is the enemy of our people. Now, if only he has the opportunity to appoint a Supreme Court Justice or two and this legacy will affect the system for generations.

There is no question his enemies make stuff up and blame him for everything that happens anywhere in the world – Obama is at fault, and the GOP has been doing this since President Obama took office in 2009. We know they have tried to do everything they could do to make sure he is erased from history. It’s my opinion that these conservatives and others want to make sure that no other black man or person of color ever lives in the White House again.

The president, regardless of what he has or has not done is my hero. This is why; he has been a sterling example of possibilities for future black children to aspire to great heights. As far as his job is concerned, he has done more than the last president, by the way, is never mentioned in any conversation because for all the blame placed on Mr. Obama; the root cause of them was because of the Bush, who caused the destruction of lives and treasure.

Yet, the GOP and Tea Party are saying America is now being destroyed because an ethical, intelligent man is in power. Then there are the rest of the clowns trying to undermine him – wow – what a pitiful lot, but I have seen people like this before. They were once called the “Citizens Counsel”.  I can go on and on, but I won’t because everyone can see this power play. They have been doing it since they stole the country from the Indians.

These people of this ilk prevent job creation to put the blame on President Obama. They have not presented a job’s plan that would actually create jobs since taking control of the House of Representatives. They have been too busy trying to prevent women, gays, unions, and minorities from having voting rights. They have unanimously voted against any bill that would create jobs presented by President Obama, simply because it has been presented by President Obama.

But more appalling these folks deny and are trying to remove the social networks that are designed to assist the needy. To them it doesn’t matter whether you are old, children, or the sick. They make real people suffer because they hate Obama. President Obama is certainly not a Socialist, as evidenced by his love for capitalism and how he helped save it. He doesn’t want the government to run your life; he simply wants a government that enables people to be able to run their own lives.

Saying that Obama hates white people or rich people is about as useful as throwing sand in the sandbox… it’s obviously childish and holds absolutely no proof or clout except for being a nuisance. Obama has undoubtedly proven that he is not soft on terror – just ask some of the world’s most sought after terrorists who now rest in peace.

He has also proven that he is not weak on immigration with record numbers of deportations every year since he has taken office. Obama has opened the lines of communication up further than most Presidents in the past have been able to between Israel and Palestine. He has also made it clear that he believes it’s a woman’s right to choose, although his choice is life.

We will soon have to choose is replacement, a new Congress, and House members. The up-coming elections are the most important of our time and if you don’t choose to vote. You have nothing to say. VOTE!!! And that is my THOUGHT PROVOKING PERSPECTIVE!


A War For Your Soul

2

YOU MUST WATCH THIS!!!

I was looking through my achieves today and came across this powerful video that I posted a few years ago. It was done by filmmaker and public speaker Reggie Bullock one of the most sought after motivational speakers in the United States. Reggie’s short film “A War For Your Soul” is a stirring, inspirational video for today’s generation. Million’s of internet viewers have watched “A War For Your Soul” since its creation. The video has garnered praise from mayors, city leaders, youth and civic organizations and almost every major country around the world; sparking dialogue in encouraging adults to play a more active role in educating children.

You may well have seen it, but it is truly worth another look. The video impacted me as much today, as it did the first time I saw it. Share it and teach your children! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…

A War For Your Soul-regular version from Erisai Films on Vimeo.


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